I will be adding one more post after this one, for a total of 30 posts. After that, I will stop posting for awhile, except for any reader comments that I receive. As should be evident, I do not allow comments to be posted for any of my posts; however, my email address is available on the Welcome page, so please feel free to send me your thoughts on anything that I have written. As long as it is not "hate mail," I will do my best to respond to you personally, and may reply to you, anonymously, as part of any future posts that I make to this blog. In this post, I will consider, briefly, a number of issues related to traditional Roman Catholicism.
The wearing of veils by women at Mass.
The 1917 Code of Canon Law, following centuries of canon law, states the following:
§1. It is desirable that, consistent with ancient discipline, women be separated from men in church.
§2. Men, in a church or outside a church, while they are assisting at sacred rites, shall be bare-headed, unless the approved mores of the people or peculiar circumstances of things determine otherwise; women, however, shall have a covered head and be modestly dressed, especially when they approach the table of the Lord.
Of course, the above text does not appear in the 1983 Code of Canon Law, which, technically, abrogated the 1917 Code. Some will use this fact as "evidence" that women are no longer required to wear veils. As with "covered heads," the 1983 Code nowhere mentions that women should be "modestly dressed," either, so this "argument from silence," if true, can be used to support the assertion that women at Mass can be immodestly dressed. By this absurd logic, no objection should be made to women coming to Mass in bikinis.
The Church, for centuries, interpreted Saint Paul's teaching in 1st Corinthians (11:4-5) as being literal (along with 11:15, which plainly teaches that women should have long hair, at least relative to the men around them), and it is just yet another capitulation to modernism and women's liberation and feminism to say that the wearing of veils/head-coverings was just "disciplinary." No one, of course, prior to Vatican II (except for the modernists) saw it that way.
The annulment fiasco.
This one is about giving divorced people "second chances." I believe in "second chances," but never at the expense of true sacramental marriage.
It is ironic that getting a civil annulment is both a complex and time-consuming affair which necessitates expert legal help. The United Way of Connecticut web site states, "With the divorce law reforms that took place in Connecticut in 1973, the number of annulments dealt with by courts has declined, and it is now considered a rare procedure. Annulment in Connecticut is a complex legal matter, in part because the grounds for annulment are found in a number of different statutes (laws), as well as in what is known as common law. Considering that this is a very complex area of the law, anyone who considers seeking an annulment of marriage is cautioned to seek competent legal counsel before taking any action." Grounds for a civil annulment include such things as bigamy, incest, fraud, insanity, mentally disabled, impotence, under legal age of consent, marriage not consummated, incompetence, duress, misunderstanding, concealment, incapacity due to drugs or alcohol, etc. Still, a civil annulment is the exception and not the rule.
Within the Roman Catholic Church, however, not getting an annulment is the rare exception. Canon 1095 and its "lack of due discretion" is sufficient for every modernist American diocesan tribunal to annul any sacramental marriage. Usually, the "ex" (aka, Respondent) does not care, and the Petitioner gets his/her "second chance." If you are a divorced Catholic who cares about the Truth, strive to make the Tribunal of Second Instance the Roman Rota at the Vatican. That tribunal does not appear to "rubber stamp" the decision of the first tribunal or have your case heard by a SSPX tribunal.
Natural Family Planning.
This form of "Catholic birth control" used to be only allowed for grave reasons; now it is allowed for "serious" reasons. Certainly, that which is "grave" is always serious, but is that which "serious" always grave?? Pope Pius XI, speaking with the infallible Ordinary Magisterium gave the timeless teaching of the Church:
"But no reason, however grave, may be put forward by which anything intrinsically against nature may become conformable to nature and morally good. Since, therefore, the conjugal act is destined primarily by nature for the begetting of children, those who in exercising it deliberately frustrate its natural power and purpose sin against nature and commit a deed which is shameful and intrinsically vicious." (Casti Connubii, 54)
Clearly, Pope Pius XI was talking about the "w-method" of birth control ("the pill" had not, of course, been invented), which means that when a married couple has sex, they must at least be open to the possibility of children, otherwise, they sin mortally. Pope Pius XI states:
"Since, however, We have spoken fully elsewhere on the Christian education of youth, let Us sum it all up by quoting once more the words of St. Augustine: 'As regards the offspring it is provided that they should be begotten lovingly and educated religiously,' -- and this is also expressed succinctly in the Code of Canon Law -- 'The primary end of marriage is the procreation and the education of children.'" (Casti Connubii, 17) (Indeed, canon law does contain infallible truths!)
"Holy Church knows well that not infrequently one of the parties is sinned against rather than sinning, when for a grave cause he or she reluctantly allows the perversion of the right order. In such a case, there is no sin, provided that, mindful of the law of charity, he or she does not neglect to seek to dissuade and to deter the partner from sin. Nor are those considered as acting against nature who in the married state use their right in the proper manner although on account of natural reasons either of time or of certain defects, new life cannot be brought forth. For in matrimony as well as in the use of the matrimonial rights there are also secondary ends, such as mutual aid, the cultivating of mutual love, and the quieting of concupiscence which husband and wife are not forbidden to consider so long as they are subordinated to the primary end and so long as the intrinsic nature of the act is preserved." (Casti Connubii, 59)
So, clearly, the Church does not condemn periodic abstinence (provided that there is mutual consent) but would condemn oral and/or anal sex, especially, if vaginal sex did not follow. How about NFP? That method of "birth control" is scientific, systematic, empirical, and "data driven." In my opinion, "grave reasons" (such as the mother being told that she would die from another pregnancy) should be the only reason to use NFP. Otherwise, use Standard Days, and breast-feed your baby, especially, during the night, and welcome any children that God will send you!
As with NFP, Pope Pius XI (perhaps the last true traditional Pope), gives the infallible teaching on true ecumenism from the Ordinary Magisterium:
"So, Venerable Brethren, it is clear why this Apostolic See has never allowed its subjects to take part in the assemblies of non-Catholics: for the union of Christians can only be promoted by promoting the return to the one true Church of Christ of those who are separated from it, for in the past they have unhappily left it. To the one true Church of Christ, we say, which is visible to all, and which is to remain, according to the will of its Author, exactly the same as He instituted it... For since the mystical body of Christ, in the same manner as His physical body, is one, compacted and fitly joined together, it were foolish and out of place to say that the mystical body is made up of members which are disunited and scattered abroad: whosoever therefore is not united with the body is no member of it, neither is he in communion with Christ its head.
"Furthermore, in this one Church of Christ no man can be or remain who does not accept, recognize and obey the authority and supremacy of Peter and his legitimate successors...Let them therefore return to their common Father, who, forgetting the insults previously heaped on the Apostolic See, will receive them in the most loving fashion...This is the fount of truth, this the house of Faith, this the temple of God: if any man enter not here, or if any man go forth from it, he is a stranger to the hope of life and salvation. Let none delude himself with obstinate wrangling. For life and salvation are here concerned, which will be lost and entirely destroyed, unless their interests are carefully and assiduously kept in mind." (Mortalium Animos, 10-11)
So, what to make of Vatican II's statements on ecumenism? Of course, Vatican II never claimed, anywhere, to overturn, abrogate, etc., Mortalium Animos, and the Council spoke of avoiding "error" and "indifferentism" in ecumenical dialogue, so what to make of it? I suppose that we, as traditional Catholics, can look at Vatican II, as compared to the infallible Ordinary & Supreme Magisterium and say, "Perhaps it is time to use a carrot rather than a stick." A short example will demonstrate this.
A few years ago I read on a traditional Catholic message board how a young woman, a neophyte, came to a SSPX catechism class because she wanted to convert to Catholicism. She was dressed in pants; the religious sister teaching the class told her that when she returned next time that she needed to be dressed in a skirt. She never returned. To take another example, my family attends an Indult mass. My wife and oldest daughter always wear dresses and/or skirts with veils. My wife told me about a woman who attended that Mass who, when she first came, was dressed in blue jeans and tennis shoes. Now, weeks later, she is coming to Mass in a dress with a veil. Perhaps, if the SSPX religious sister had displayed a little more charity and tolerance, the young woman in question would have almost certainly "skirted-up" over time or have left the class all on her own. Instead, she left because some SSPX sister was rude to her.
The moral of the story is that it is possible to maintain one's principles, even traditional ones, without being a jerk; in fact, we can still uphold all of our traditional beliefs and values while at the same time being loving and caring individuals. Perhaps that is Vatican II was trying to teach us. It is sad to think that the young woman in question ended-up in some modernist RCIA class or left the Faith entirely.
Point of ecumenism is that it is easier for the Magisterium to "regulate" love than it is for them to regulate hate.
The Church has become to big for the Pope to manage all on his own. In the Middle Ages, this was not a problem -- the clergy did not have telephones, faxes, or email. They had no choice but to manage their dioceses on their own. Today, Rome is swamped, and like the old emperors of Rome, it has become a management nightmare, so instead of splitting the Church into two halves (which, of course, would be impossible, heretical, and absurd), Vatican II tried to "downsize" things a bit. Still, the Pope trying to "move" an episcopal conference (such as the USCCB) is like a man trying to push his station wagon that has run out of gas. For traditional Catholics, the USCCB means little, so while some have made a "big deal" about collegiality, I do not see it as an important issue. It is possible to be a traditional Catholic, attend Mass, and be completely independent (or nearly so) of the local heretic bishop.
This one is a no-brainer. Error does not have any "right" to exist. That which is contrary to the Perfect Nature of the One and Triune God has no right to exist. Indeed, all societies have the right, duty, and indeed, obligation to punish error, that which is contrary to the Perfect God and His Revelation through His One and Only Son, Jesus Christ. Pope Pius IX stated the infallible teaching of the Church:
Condemned Error 15: Every man is free to embrace and profess that religion which, guided by the light of reason, he shall consider true. -- Allocution "Maxima quidem," June 9, 1862; Damnatio "Multiplices inter," June 10, 1851.
This teaching is infallible, if not by the Supreme Magisterium of the Church then by the Ordinary Magisterium of the Church. Note the references. We do not need Vatican II to "interpret" this passage for us; its very own words provide the correct interpretation. Likewise, we do not need to "reconcile" this passage with anything that was said in Vatican II, namely, Dignitatis humanae.
What to make of that document, then? Of course, as I mentioned in the previous post to this one, one could play "word gymnastics," and make Dignitatis Humanae and Quanta Cura say things that neither document says! In any case, it does not matter; Quanta Cura represents the Ordinary, hence infallible, Magisterium of the Church whereas Dignitatis Humanae does not.
Still, is religious freedom always a bad thing? When such serves the interests of the One True Church and One True Faith, no, it is not. Even the SSPX has gone to court (against the SSPV) to recover property that was theirs; likewise, when the Archdiocese of Atlanta tried to "delist" a traditional Catholic group from using the word "Catholic" in the telephone book, the letter from their attorney fell on "deaf ears" and the local telephone company rebuffed the Archdiocese's attempts.
So, clearly, secular religious freedoms can serve the interests of the Truth, now a minority, from the errors of those who "represent" the majority. Looking at things from this perspective, Dignitatis Humanae was not a statement of faith or belief but a statement of "operating principles," that the notion of religious freedom, while formally heretical, can serve the interests of the Truth, so we, as traditional Catholics, should not have any qualms about suing when our legal, secular rights have been violated.
So, in conclusion, read Vatican II as it was meant to be, a pastoral Council, not a dogmatic or even doctrinal one. Sometimes, to advance and defend the Truth, one needs to be pragmatic in his/her approach, which was what Vatican II was trying to teach us.
These groups are why we have Indult Masses in the first place, so "give credit where credit is due." Still, they are intolerant of "Feeneyites," whereas Rome is tolerant of us/them. Go figure. As Rick Ross states on his cult website, the SSPX has some cleaning-up to do. They have been sued, and rightly so for infringing on people's right to privacy, and they, as I have cited above, display an intolerant, sometimes belligerent, attitude towards anyone who does not agree with them. One can and should forever hold to the immutable Truths of the Catholic Faith without always being rude or mean; doing so will only serve to undermine and marginalize the True Faith, outside of which no one at all will be saved, which is the traditional Roman Catholic cause. As for supplied jurisdiction, these groups likely have it (although, is there still a "state of emergency" within the Church?), for the same reasons that the Orthodox have it, per Canon 844. Avoid the SSPV, CMRI, etc., at all costs, however, as they are sedes and alter the Canon of the Mass.
(UPDATE: I've changed my mind about the SSPV, CMRI, etc., and have even attended some of their Masses, confessed to their priests, etc. As for "altering the Canon of the Mass," I was wrong about that; the SSPV, CMRI, etc., use the prayers which were traditionally used during an interregnum. In that respect, they are not altering the Canon of the Mass.)
'For many' versus 'for all'.
No one doubts the validity of the former, so why "chance it"?
Traditional Good Friday Prayer.
As the SSPX notes on their website, the traditional Good Friday prayer is ancient, going back to the 3rd-century, which means that the prayer is of Apostolic origin, and hence, comes from Jesus Christ, the King of the Jews. No one disputes this. For this reason, it should be retained, and traditional priests of all stripes should feel completely free to recite it, that is, the pre-1955 or 1955 version. It does not matter if it is PC or not. Hell is not PC, but that does nothing to diminish its existence.
This is a prime example of lawful disobedience of a Pope's unlawful command.
The death penalty.
Sovereign rulers have the duty, right, and indeed, obligation to punish transgressors of the divine and natural law, not only to protect the innocent from being victimized but also for the salvation of the immortal souls of those who would jeopardize their own salvation by committing evil deeds. While virtually everyone in today's world cannot understand the "cruelty" of those rulers who governed Christian kingdoms during the Middle Ages (the people living at that time, of course, did not view themselves as living in some "middle" time period), one must remember that the modern-day prison system of today's World simply did not exist centuries ago. Executing (with or without torture, mutilation, and/or dismemberment) individuals, then as now, would provide the maximum deterrent for future would-be offenders, but unlike today's penal system of even life-imprisonment-without-parole, executions would also provide a zero recidivism rate. For the Medieval rulers, torture, mutilation, dismemberment, and executions were a "necessary evil" to safeguard the sanctity of a Christian society, and ultimately, the salvation of its members.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church's flip-flop between the first (not so authoritative) and second (more authoritative) editions are a good exercise in understanding the present Magisterium's struggle with trying to understand its own theology. In any case, traditional Catholics can look to the infallible Ordinary Magisterium of the Church, which teaches that sovereign rulers can both punish and pardon, which means applying the death penalty when needed as well as providing mercy when the sovereign ruler feels such to be appropriate.
When I attended a modernist RCIA program 10 years ago (eventually, quitting, to go to a more "traditional" program), during one class a woman neophyte went on a 60-second rant about how "evil, terrible, and disgusting" parents were who spanked their children. I sat in my chair in utter amazement and shock; no one, including the feminist instructor, challenged the young woman. Neither did I.
Just compare the United States and Singapore. President Obama, in a speech last year (2010), made yet another false analogy (which politicians so very much love to use), comparing the test scores of US students to those in Singapore. While listening to his speech, I remember thinking, "Well, yeah, they spank their kids."
Any objective assessment of Singapore will show that society to be a happy and prosperous one. They are a first-world country with a high standard of living, but unlike America, they have a very low crime rate and a low imprisonment rate. Unlike America, who spends a very large fraction of its GDP on prisons and war, Singapore does not tolerate deviate behavior. If you get a hold of a gun and fire it at someone; even if you miss, your sentence is death on the gallows. As a consequence, there are few murders or attempted murders in Singapore.
If you agree with my assessment above that the death penalty is, principally, about protecting the lives of the innocent, then you must agree that spanking/paddling/caning is both moral and necessary. For if you were living in Singapore, would not you, as a parent, want to do everything in your power to insure that your "little one" does not end his/her life on the gallows? And, as we have seen, the gallows are there to protect the innocent, if only by the fact that they provide a zero recidivism rate.
As I have said elsewhere, I have five children, and as parents, we do not spank any of our children. Raising children in America is different than raising them in Singapore, and there are terrible legal consequences for you, as a parent, if you spank/paddle your children. So, unless you live in a state that "tolerates" such behavior, I would definitively recommend that you do not use corporeal punishment with your kids. You might as well put a "Welcome DHS/CPS" sign on your front door, because you stand a good chance of having your children placed in foster care and even you ending-up in jail.
Some "authorities" will say that spanking kids is a bad thing. They will say that if you "spank your little girl when she lies," that she may stop lying, but that she, in the process, may also stop "sharing her fantasies with you." Such may be true, so I agree that it is wrong and immoral to spank young children, especially, those who are not of school age. As children get older, however, they will stop sharing their fantasies with you anyway, whether you spank them or not.
Other researchers tout the benefits of spanking/caning. At a Beyond Belief conference several years ago (a gathering of atheistic, materialistic scientists committed to advancing an atheistic agenda), one researcher touted the benefits of caning, saying how the punishment "went straight to the brain, changed neural connections, etc." Without question, wayward teenagers in Singapore simply do not engage in the "petty crimes" that a small minority of American teenagers commit, as news events over the past few decades well attest to. People who travel to Singapore are warned not to break the law.
The moral of this story is please do not condemn individuals and/or societies, past or present, who choose to punish their offenders, young or old. Without question, there are benefits, both to the individual and society, by punishing offenders.
This is the root of modern-day evil, the basis for modern-day capitalism. Of course, some will say that the Church has "changed her tune" on this one, but unless you are Amish (hopefully, a Catholic Amish), it is virtually impossible to exist in the Western World without having some involvement with the banking system. (Even many Amish own tractors, which they often remove the rubber tires from, still a product of modern capitalism.) So, the Church, as a matter of discipline, had no choice but to "capitulate." Those of us with large families need a home, and to have a home, one needs a mortgage.
This inescapable reality does not change the fact that capitalism is evil, and as a consequence, scandalizes men to commit evil deeds. The greatest evil deed is the destruction of our World and its environment. That the World is warming from man-made greenhouse gas emissions is an undeniable fact, which is the sole product of the "free enterprise" system. To carry on their endless greed, corporations will continue to "maximum profits," and as such, we will continue to burn fossil fuels. The World will continue to warm, eventually, becoming completely uninhabitable. At that moment (or before) Christ will come again.
To those "green Catholics" who think that they can "tame" capitalism into some Eco-friendly system of enterprise, they are fools. Here's the central truism of capitalism:
In a society driven by usurious, free-market capitalism, it is impossible to limit consumerism, that is, consumption by individuals and/or groups.As for Francis, he needs to concentrate on converting souls. His efforts to limit greenhouse gasses are DOA; he's both right (in my opinion) and wrong at the same time. As the Vicar of God, however, his principle duty, right and obligation is the salvation of peoples' souls, that anyone and everyone come to embrace the One True Faith through sacramental Baptism, explicit faith in the Blessed Trinity and Incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ, submission at least to the Petrine Office (which Francis sometimes claims to hold), and full participation in the Sacraments and sacramentals of the One and Only True Church, which is the Catholic Church, the Immaculate Bride of Jesus Christ, which is His Mystical Body, outside of which there is neither the forgiveness nor the remission of sins.
Trying to convert Francis to the One True Religion is almost as hard as trying to convert the Devil himself. In any case, we're here to save as many souls from eternal Hell as we can; if Francis is numbered among the Elect, then praise be to the One and Triune God. I suspect, however, that his eternal lot is among the reprobate. As for the usurious capitalists, if they destroy the World through their usurious greed, then so be it! They will have simply "reaped" what they have "sown."
These are all grave sins. Whether the last one can ever be a venial sin is anyone's guess, but the first four are always mortal sins, the first two being abominations that cry-out to Heaven for vengeance and worthy of the death penalty, as the infallible Ordinary and Universal Magisterium of the Church teaches us.
In the ancient World, it was the merciful alternative to execution; as such, slavery is not always intrinsically evil nor unjust.
One might as well say that hamsters and guinea pigs can be ordained to the presbyterate. I would have more confidence confessing to either of those than to a woman.
It's completely orthodox and reasonable. The SSPX bishop's should all sign it. Celebrating a Novus Ordo liturgy "here and there," in spite of its deficiencies, is not a big deal. As long as the 1962 Missal is preserved, along with the Catholic Church's traditional theology and sacraments, that's what matters.
Don't reconcile with him. Instead, wait for a true Pope, Vicar of God, to ascend the Throne or at least wait for Francis to be deposed. If you reconcile with him, he'll simply "move the goalposts" later on, and you'll end-up regretting your decision, perhaps for all Eternity.
It is almost certainly the case that Catholicism is a false, man-made religion, which means that it will continue "morphing" into a completely naturalistic philosophy without any supernatural elements at all to it. Folks, you simply have better things to do with your time and money!! Everything that I wrote above is pure bullshit, all of it!